Getty had pictures of Eric Dier at the top today, so feel free to comment on his outfit or something. For whatever reason, I found it a surprising choice but also a pretty good one.
Ramble of the Day
In a bit of a continuation of yesterday’s Hoddle, I ran into a tweet that I just had to share:
If Man United win 5-3 against West Ham, lose 1-0 to Leicester and Chelsea take at least three points from their final two matches, there will be a playoff to decide fourth spot.— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 21, 2020
Man United and Leicester will be tied on points, goal difference, goals scored and goals conceded pic.twitter.com/9FlwxOgPbE
One of the funny things I forgot to mention that I love are when results get chaotic. The above lists a genuinely chaotic set of events, but even other slightly wild scenarios excite me. Before the final round of group games at the NWSL Challenge Cup, five of the eight teams competing had the same number of points, which provided opportunity for a table that would look different in just a couple of games.
More regular forms of chaos are things like the relegation race, though the true thrill is watching a team survive against the odds. I still think about the year Sunderland’s improbable escape in 2013-14, though Aston Villa’s (very) possible rise from the bottom three at almost the last moment is genuinely entertaining. No one regularly embraces the chaos quite like the English Championship on its final regular season day, and I’m hoping it lives up to its reputation today.
Again, for me it comes down to the ability to entertain but it also boils down to the element of surprise. I really love the joy of a surprising event, be it something delightfully shocking in a television show or in a game of football. Surprises (of the mostly inoffensive type) are genuinely entertaining to me, and football doles out a ton of them because in the end, a lot of things are truly unpredictable. It’s close to being hopeful about sports, because following the idea that anything can happen means good things can happen to your team, even if you’re just tricking yourself into believing it. Accepting that anything can happen, though, is really the point; hopefully, those unexpected events are funny and enjoyable, and that’s why I hope that Manchester United-Leicester playoff happens.
tl;dr: I love the unusual and unexpected, like the strange way Manchester United and Leicester could enter a playoff for a Champions League spot.
Stay informed, read this: E. Alex Jung interviews comedian Ziwe Fumudoh on her career and reputation for calling out racism for Vulture
Links of the Day
NWSL will expand to Los Angeles in 2022 with an ownership group led by actress Natalie Portman and tech entrepreneur Alexis Ohanian.
Crystal Palace signed Nathan Ferguson on a free.
AC Milan manager Stefano Pioli signed a contract extension, meaning a reported move to hire Ralf Rangnick is off.
David Squires on the return of Leeds United to the Premier League in his latest cartoon.
A longer read: Nicole Wetsman on the very online culture of the NWSL supporter for The Verge